Twitter “Withholds” Two Accounts After Meeting With Turkey Officials.
Twitter has recently blocked two accounts on Sunday that may have been used to spread corruption allegation against Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, his government and his inner circle. This move came after a high-level meetings between the government and executives from the company during the previous week, and after the Turkish government had cause a massive storm of protest during March by trying to out right ban the social network entirely.
The two accounts to be blocked on Sunday where, @Haramzadeler333 and @Basacalan, which leaked a large amount of secret documents and recorded phone conversations implicating Erdogan, his family and associates in a massive scaled corruption scandal.
Between the two, @Haramzadeler333 and @Basacalan had more than a total of one million followers on Twitter. Users have reported that the two accounts were listed as “withheld” when they tried to access them from within the country during the weekend.
Twitter’s global policy team commented that it withholds content only “after due process”, such as after having received a court order, and in a tweet commented that it would not do so” at the mere request of a gov’t official”. They continued on by saying that it would not give out any details of the two account’s users to the government.
“Twitter has not provided and will not provide user information to Turkish authorities without valid legal process,” it said.
The government, which accuses those behind the accounts of publishing false and spiteful content, is also pressing the US-based company to hand over any details on the owners of another dozens of accounts.
@Haramzadeler333 and @Bascalan appeared to have privileged access to information and documents related to a 15 month police investigation into the corruption allegations. Erdongan has accused a “parallel state” controlled by a US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen of orchestrating the grand scandal against him, by using the wide ranged networks of allies in the polices and judiciary.